Ja Morant is known to be one of the most controversial players in the NBA. But his on-court value is far too much for anyone to not consider Ja Morant as one of the best players.
But does that mean anything he does off-court would be forgiven? The answer is no. Recently, when he flashed a gun on Instagram live, he was punished with suspension for 8 games. Although many believed that Morant could get a 50-match ban for this incident. But this would have only happened if it was proved that he brought the firearm with him on the plane to Denver.
Although many pundits and fans have raged over this incident, the only light in this dark hour for Ja is his father. Tee Morant has backed his son to come back from this setback and has taken full responsibility for Ja’s actions.
Tee Morant was born in 1978 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA. His full name is Temetrius Jamel Morant. Although not confirmed but his father was an entrepreneur whose name was never disclosed and his mother Saundra E. Dawson worked at Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital.
Tee started playing basketball in high school after which he later goes on to play for Claflin University. During his basketball career, he played with NBA legend Ray Allen at Hillcrest. Other than that, he was allowed to join Dallas’s camp as a free agent but was rejected because Dallas was looking to sign a player above the height of 6’8.
Tee then goes on to pay semi-professionally overseas but has to leave after his partner Jamie Morant gets pregnant. Tee married Jamie who was a point guard and softball player in high school. After Ja’s birth, Tee started living at home and became a barber.
He supported his son in becoming a basketball player. He was the first basketball coach for Ja and made a big impact on the Memphis rising star. But that doesn’t mean that Tee always praises his son. Tee criticized Ja’s performance in the series to knock out the Timberwolves. Tee said:
Ja played like trash. Trash!
Ja Morant’s father is also no stranger to controversies. Morant senior got into a fight with pundit Sharon Sharpe in the Lakers match and was joined by Dillon Brooks, Stephen Adams, and Ja Morant himself. They had to be separated by security. But later on, they cooled the air by shaking hands after the match.
Just before the incident of the flashing gun, Washington Post made a report about Ja’s case of beating a 17-year-old. In this report it was also highlighted that Ja was ordered by his father to go inside as quoted:
No, no, no. Go back. Go back in the house.
After this report and the pointing of a laser at Indiana Pacer’s bus, Ja reached his epitome when he flashed a gun on Instagram live and served a ban which saw him being suspended for 8 matches. After serving the suspension, he came to the court against Houston where he started from the bench. Tee Morant took responsibility for Ja’s action in the post-match interview with the Athletic:
I blame myself. I blame myself. Because that’s my son. When I say I will die for my kids, I will die for my kids. Now has the world thought about that or thought like that? Anything my kid does, I’m going to blame myself.
This instance has reflected on the relationship between Ja and Tee and while Ja’s action has hurt his father, he also felt that he has let his father down. Morant said during an ESPN interview:
It’s been even tougher on me because I know they raised me the right way. I know they did everything I asked of them and raised me and my little sister [Teniya] pretty much the right way. For me to be in the news for the wrong reasons, I know it hurt them but it hurt me even more because I feel like I let them down.
Although Ja is facing one of the worse times of his career. No one can suggest that he doesn’t have the backing of his family and significantly his father who inspired him to become an NBA star.